Suspension of cross-LoC trade comes at a huge price for the people: Mirwaiz
Srinagar: Moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Friday termed the Centre’s decision to suspend cross-LoC trade “extremely unfortunate” and said such measures for “short-term gains” come at a huge price for the people.
Hardening its stand against Pakistan, India Thursday indefinitely suspended cross-LoC trade at two points along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir effective Friday, following reports that it was being “misused” by elements from across the border to smuggle weapons, narcotics and fake currency.
“Extremely unfortunate that GoI (government of India) instead of enhancing people to people contact as families of both side of LoC stand divided & improving trade & other ties, even whatever little had been achieved since (former PM Atal Bihari) Vajpayee time is being blocked & stopped.
“Such measures for short term gains come at a huge price for people” Mirwaiz tweeted.
In an official statement, the Home Ministry said Thursday that orders have been issued for halting the trade at Salamabad of Baramulla in the Kashmir region, and Chakkan-da-Bagh of Poonch district in the Jammu region, after reports of very large scale “misuse” of the cross-LoC trade.
“It has, therefore, been decided by the Government of India to suspend the LoC trade at Salamabad and Chakkan-da-Bagh in Jammu and Kashmir with immediate effect.
“Meanwhile, a stricter regulatory and enforcement mechanism is being worked out and will be put in place in consultation with various agencies. The issue of reopening of LoC trade will be revisited thereafter,” the statement said.
Immediately after the announcement, political parties in Jammu and Kashmir termed it an “election gimmick”.
Umar Farooq said that people mostly staying away from the electoral process is a peacefully conveyed clear message to Government of India that people here want a serious political initiative towards the resolution of lingering Kashmir issue and that the people and the leadership will support all initiatives that are aimed at addressing it.
Addressing the congregational Friday prayers at the historic Jamia Masjid, Mirwaiz said that he has time and again reiterated that the Kashmir issue that since past 70 years between India and Pakistan deserves serious political handling but all the successive regimes that ruled India and Pakistan so far have failed to resolve it.
Mirwaiz said that the people of Kashmir are facing tremendous hardships since past 70 years in general and 30 years, in particular, hoping that some serious efforts would be made to resolve the issues so that peace prevails in the region.
Mirwaiz said that It’s not that people of Kashmir don’t believe in democratic practices that electoral processes entail or don’t believe in its empowerment but people want to understand to what end do they participate? Has it in any way changed anything on ground for them? Has it helped in ending the uncertainty in our lives? Has our true situation ever been conveyed to people in India or any effort made in that direction?